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Laikipia Finance chief impeached over violation of constitution

Laikipia County Executive Committee member for Finance and Economic planning has been impeached by the local County   Assembly that has accused him of violating the constitution.

Murungi  Ndai, the  Finance  CEC’s  fate  was  sealed on Thursday  after  the  assembly  voted  unanimously  to remove  him  from  the  post  accusing him of violating the constitution whereby he allegedly failed to conduct public participation  during  the  making  of  the 2018/2019 budget making process. All the 21 MCAs present voted for his ouster. Only three were absent.

The  MCAs  further  accused  the  Finance  Chief  of  irregular  employment  of  county staff, failure  to  pay employees  on time, failure  to  publish  the  Finance  Act  and s pending on unbudgeted trade fairs and Innovation shows.

During  the  heated  afternoon  session of the debate on the motion moved by Sosian Ward MCA, Jacob Edong, the ward  representatives  averred that the finance chief had to vacate the post to allow for a probe into all the allegations he  was  facing.

Tigithi  ward MCA, John  Mutahi  while supporting the ouster motion of the embattled CEC wondered how the county government had failed to pay workers’ salaries for last month yet the assembly had passed a budget for the wages to a tune of Sh. 2.4 billion for this financial year.

“We need to be told where money meant for paying salaries went to as workers go without pay. This could be interpreted that the funds have been misappropriated and that’s why employees are crying,” Mutahi told the House.

The  Marmanet  ward rep, Simon Kanyutu, noted  that  the Finance  chief  had  approved  purchase  of  luxury vehicles  by  the  county government yet the assembly had proposed for the purchase of graders and other road construction equipment.

“This  house had proposed for purchase of graders to improve our road network especially in remote areas but what we’re  witnessing is that only new high end vehicles that are being bought yet residents are suffering due to poor roads. This  culture of impunity must come to an end.” Kanyutu said.

His  Nanyuki  ward counterpart,  Veronica  Ikunywa accused the CEC of diverting Sh.600 million approved for the health  sector and re allocated the same to other functions and also overcharging traders on rates and penalties.

The  Deputy Speaker, Daniel Nyausi who chaired the session said that the assembly would a select committee within a week to  probe the accusations facing the CEC and later table a report in the house.

If  the embattled  CEC  will  be  found  culpable  of  the  accusations  facing  him, Governor Ndiritu Muriithi  will have no  choice but to appoint his replacement who would have to be vetted by the Assembly before approval.

By  Martin  Munyi

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